What to do? It’s an early January day, one of those odd ones that’s wedged between cold fronts. On Long Island, that means it sort of feels like March, and there is an urge to bundle up and start spring cleaning — while the inner voice says, “Don’t be too quick. This is just a winter lull, and there will be icy temperatures at any moment.”
As if to serve as a reminder, there are the remnants of last night’s flurries (above) and autumn leaves encased in ice on top of the pool cover (below).
This is my view, gray and brown.
I am a gardener in need of a garden — and then I remember one of my Christmas gifts from Joe, my first-ever Amaryllis bulb.
I filled the pot halfway up with potting soil, and nestled the bulb into it.
Then, I added more soil, leaving the top 1/4 inch uncovered.
Add water, place in a bright location, and wait.
That was fun, but I wish it was a magic Amaryllis — one that’s planted and grows and blooms more quickly. Like I said, I’m a gardener in need of a garden. I need some green, some promise of what’s to come. I need a walk around the yard. Maybe the January sun will reveal something — and there it is. The climbing hydrangea — the one that covers an arbor under which I walk every dark, cold morning — has buds and peeling bark that I especially love.
Further along is the Magnolia, with its fuzzy buds beginning to swell with the promise of pale pink blossoms.
As I walked along the path to the door, there, floating in the mass of brown leaves, was the green of Columbine. I planted the seeds last spring, but the small plants never bloomed. They are, though, still alive, and I have very high hopes that they will flower this spring.
I’m not sure if this little stroll satisfied my gardening need or created more of a hunger — especially since it’s still early afternoon and there is the stretch of the day ahead. A few months from now, this sort of time would be an invitation to start seeds.
Hmmmm, seeds. Seeds? Of course, seeds! Why didn’t I think of that before — the absolute, single-most, best way to spend a winter afternoon.
How are you whiling away your winter days in the garden?